The Creative Edge Trivia Quiz


True or False? (answers below...)

  1. Elvis Presley was a big success with the girls at school.
  2. John Lennon was expelled from kindergarten as a four year old.
  3. Madonna excelled as a cheer leader at school.
  4. Angelina Jolie used to sleep with a snake.
  5. Brad Pitt started his big break while driving strip-o-gram girls around Hollywood.
  6. JK Rowling based the Harry Potter stories on her childhood.
  7. Dan Brown (the author of The Da Vinci Code) decided to become a novelist right out of school.
  8. Andy Warhol studied with all the great fine artists in New York.
  9. Frida Kahlo took to painting as a feminist statement of independence.
  10. Albert Einstein was a very accomplished experimental physicist.
  11. Sigmund Freud developed his famous Oedipus complex theory in response to an outbreak of boys killing their fathers and having sex with their mothers in late 19 century Austria.
  12. Walt Disney’s favourite film was Pollyanna.
  13. Coco Chanel started her famous look because she wanted to liberate women.
  14. Amelia Earhart set a record for being the first woman to pilot a plane across the Atlantic.
  15. Sir Edmund Hillary had to wait several years to be knighted after conquering Mt Everest .
  16. Tiger Woods was an all round sportsman at school.
  17. While at school David Beckham was a party guy.

  18. Bonus Question: What do these seventeen cultural icons have in common?



  1. False: Elvis Presley had few male or female friends at school. That changed when he began touring and his voice, wiggly hips , slicked back hair and sexy sneer turned the girls on.
  2. True: John Lennon had been abandoned by both his mother and his father and went into emotional overload; a state that stayed with him his whole life.
  3. True: But true to form, Madonna needed to be both the star and a sexual exhibitionist so wore flesh coloured tights with no apparent panties so when she did cart wheels she looked naked underneath her skirt. This got her the attention she craved.
  4. True: Angelina Jolie shared a bed with her equally weird husband Billy Bob Thornton and a non-poisonous corn snake. They also indulged in blood rituals, that is Angela and Billy Bob but not the snake.
  5. True: Always a charmer with the women, Brad Pitt was introduced to his first serious acting coach by a strip-o-gram girl.
  6. True: Just about everything in the Harry Potter stories has its roots in JK Rowling’s childhood including playing magic games with the Potter children from next door and her boy friend driving a Ford Anglia.
  7. False: Dan Brown started off trying to be a rock and roll star and nearly made it but found that he hated performing and being in the media spotlight so he gave that up to become a teacher and then a novelist. He sure managed to escape the media spotlight (not).
  8. False: While Andy Warhol was weird enough to fit in he was uniformly loathed by the established fine artists because he was trained as a commercial artist. He made his career in fine art despite the fine arts fraternity.
  9. False: Frida Kahlo went into art to be with her artist husband Diego Rivera. She was later made into a feminist icon because she suffered his infidelity but paradoxically her own infidelity has been seen as a statement of independence and a thing of virtue.
  10. False: Albert Einstein did not prove any of his theories by testing them. He was the consummate theoretical physicist and relied on others to prove his ideas.
  11. False: There has never been an epidemic of boys killing their fathers and having sex with their mothers. Sigmund Freud liked the idea so much he pinched it from a long dead Greek fiction writer. Freud scores top marks for creativity in spinning a whole psychology on top of this fiction but scores nothing for the science of it.
  12. True: This Walt Disney film mirrored the childhood he missed out on. Towards the end of his life he would watch it repeatedly and weep.
  13. True: The woman Coco Chanel most wanted to liberate was herself. She had been abandoned by her father and did not want to rely on men for support even though she had a sugar daddy. She started making fashionable clothes that rich women could work in at a time when rich women were just starting to work.
  14. False: Amelia Earhart holds the record for being the first woman to fly across the Atlantic but she did it as a passenger. She did go on to break many flying records as a pilot.
  15. False: Edmund Hillary was knighted even before he came down the mountain. He was so unprepared for fame that he thought he would have to buy new overalls so he could walk down the street of his home town.
  16. False: Tiger Woods was so focussed on golf as a boy he didn’t voluntarily play any other sport.
  17. False: David Beckham was so obsessed with football that he almost never went out with the lads at night. He played for several teams simultaneously and had no time ‘fun’. The boys loved him anyway because being a football star makes even the most boring of boys interesting .

  18. Answer: They all had unusual upbringings and were different. This made them outsiders and that gave them their creative edge. How they got to be cultural icons can be found in The Creative Edge: Inside the Lives of the World’s Most Famous Outsiders by Brent D Taylor. Published by John Wiley & Sons, October 2008.